Home' Future Building Australian Infrastructure Review : Volume 3 Number 1 Contents 56 futurebuilding Volume 3 Number 1
PPPs in good health
Australia was an early adopter of public private
partnerships (PPPs) in the health space, and it's
largely been a positive experience, in spite of some
dif culties with the very early model. But times are
changing, and Australia is heading back to the future
-- this time backed with global expertise and a much
more mature and experienced public and private
Australia was one of the rst countries in the world
to trial PPPs in the healthcare sector. Between 1992
and 2000, state governments in New South Wales,
Victoria, Queensland and Western Australia signed
seven rst-generation PPP agreements, including Port
Macquarie Hospital in New South Wales, which was
the rst health PPP to be developed in Australia.
The early health PPPs bundled core clinical
services in with the hospital's nance, construction,
and maintenance and operation.
Known as full-service PPPs, they came to
prominence as state governments turned to the
private sector in a bid to bring down the escalating
and inef cient costs of public healthcare.
There were the inevitable teething problems.
Operators had trouble agreeing on budgets,
calculating price increases and assessing how much
risk the private sector would need to accept.
Three of the projects, including Port Macquarie
Base Hospital, reverted back to the government well
ahead of their contracts, which saw governments
retreat to a more straightforward model, with the PPP
used for the asset, and the public sector delivering
PwC Infrastructure Partner, Martin Locke, says
that the experience at Port Macquarie and LaTrobe
Regional Hospitals in Victoria soured the appetite for
full-service health sector PPPs in the eastern states.
This trend has been re ected in recent major
health projects -- such as Sydney's Royal North
Shore and Melbourne's Royal Children's and Royal
Women's Hospitals -- with Australia's governments
mostly limiting the scope of hospital PPPs to exclude
clinical and core ancillary services.
trouble agreeing on
and assessing how
much risk the private
sector would need
BELOW: Patient room
at Joondalup Health
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